T-shirt Quilt, Finally

T-shirt panels
T-shirt panels

I started this quilt a long time ago, so when I pulled all of the t-shirts out last week, I wasn’t sure where I was or what to do next. The top photo shows the pieces to use as a start.

I had already trimmed off the colors, cuffs and backs, so I trimmed the other t-shirts in prepartion for interfacing them. That was a trip down memory lane. The small sizes of the shirts are hard to reconcile with the giant boy-Young Man who lives with me now.

I spent most of the day on Saturday trimming the t-shirts and pressing interfacing onto the back of each t-shirt panel. I chose a grey pebbly print that I bought before the Young Man was born to make the shirts a uniform size. After sewing sashing to a couple of the panels, I found that that technique was not working for me. I decided to just fill in between the panels. I had thought about sashing each panel and making little stars as the cornerstones. I am not sure it is going to work, though. I think I just need to fill in between the t-shirts and have stars quilted into it.

T-shirt panels
T-shirt panels

When I cut the t-shirts, I was forced to cut them all to a different size based on the design on the front, which is the main part of the quilt’s design. Looking at the all the designs and brands, while working through this process, made me think of the Young Man’s interests and how they have changed. I do think I will offer to make him another t-shirt quilt to encompass his current t-shirts, which reflect his current interests. However, his size won’t change as much during the 4 years of high school as it did during the K-8 period.

In a way, this quilt is about the fabric. The stretchy t-shirt fabric. It is not terrible to sew once the interfacing has been applied, but the cutting is tricky. I also find that sometimes the design sticks to my sewing table as I sew.

I really thought I had more t-shirts, but I guess I was brutal about the ones I chose. the Young Man also wore a lot of plain colored t-shirts as he got older, which are not interesting in a t-shirt quilt.

I almost didn’t cut up the Winnie-the-Pooh sweatshirt (dark blue, lower right) as it was so adorable and I remember chasing after the Boy trying to put it on him when he was super tiny. There are bits of schmutz on some of them, but I guess that just means they were used and well loved.

T-shirt quilt, after the weekend
T-shirt quilt, after the weekend

The boy came in and looked at the layout Sunday afternoon, as I was working on it. He liked what I had done so far. He did, however, ask me to remove the Blue’s Clues t-shirt, so I will put that one on the back. It is probably a good thing as my design wall is full and I would like to keep the size of the piece to the size of the design wall.

The bottom photo is what I ended up with after working most of the day Sunday on putting the piece together. I am particularly proud of the section with the smaller pieces (middle right).

I feel like I made good progress.

Author: Jaye

Quiltmaker who enjoys writing and frozen chocolate covered bananas.

10 thoughts on “T-shirt Quilt, Finally”

  1. You made GREAT progress! I too enjoyed your comment about the YM removing the Blue’s Clues shirts. Oh was I ever a Stitch fan when Lilo & Stitch was watched over and over again in this house.

  2. Ohhh! I love it! The grey is just the right thing for sashing and the best part is the memories coming out of the process . Enjoy 😉

  3. It’s looking really good, and I am surprised to say that I remember a few of those t-shirts! That beaver one especially. I bet the YM will really enjoy adding this quilt to his giant stack.

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